The New Network
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Mike Marcellin

Making Network Decisions Today for an SDN Tomorrow

by Juniper Employee on ‎05-01-2013 09:00 AM

The way that networks are being built is changing. Server virtualization, overlay networking, and virtualized services in the network are  redefining the network. And maybe the most exciting opportunity – SDN – has the potential to accelerate change for the better, providing a much more agile IT infrastructure.  As organizations look to the future and the potential that SDN brings, they still need to make decisions to solve today’s challenges – Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), data center consolidation and convergence, WAN utilization – and so how do they invest today while ensuring they protect their network investment for the future and can respond to these exciting changes when the time is right.  

 

At Juniper, our commitment to customers is that we will help you take advantage of the best technologies to evolve your networks at the right pace for your business and that we will provide investment protection so that whatever the future holds, you won’t have stranded capital.  To that end, there are some guiding principles that customers can use today, regardless of where they are in the SDN adoption curve, to maximize their network investment. We believe that simple, modular architectures provide better performance, that programmable systems allow you to meet future requirements and that the network should not limit how you implement components such as orchestration, overlay networks, and SDN controllers.

 

Simple, Modular Architectures Are Always Better

When SDN reaches its promise it will be critical to have agile and simple network architecture. If your core network devices can’t meet the challenge of future requirements you will be starting over and that won’t be good on your balance sheet, to your users, or your team. It will also starve you of resources you need to innovate in your core business. The network doesn’t get any simpler than a design with one switch to manage and any-to-any connectivity; this is what we call a true fabric architecture. Here’s what to look for as you’re evaluating your data center networking decisions today:

 

  1. A flat, any-to-any architecture with one logical switch to manage - regardless of the size of your data center deployment. A simplified network architecture matters because your multi-tiered web enabled applications rely on the throughput, and lower latency of a fabric to deliver the best end-user experience.  And even in an SDN world, you don’t want to provision, manage, and troubleshoot dozens or hundreds of devices.
  2. A robust Layer 3 implementation in the fabric – Layer 3 is better than Layer 2 for flexibility in adjusting to topology changes, for efficiency in converged networks, and for working around network outages.
  3. A holistic approach to network services including security – both physical and virtual – that uses high performance systems for throughput and survivability, deft software management (cloud approaches) and service chaining to optimize the security posture.

Programmable Systems Protect your Future

Programmable systems allow you to engage with multiple orchestration systems, use multiple SDN protocols, and get the best from technology today and tomorrow. There are a number of protocols that are emerging as standards – OpenFlow, VXLAN, NVGRE, and PCE to name a few.  Each has specific strengths. You want to be able to use any or all of them for what they do best. And frankly, we don’t know which ones will “win the day” as SDN evolves.  So you want to look at your network elements and ensure that they have current or committed support for a variety of protocols and that adding new and yet-to-be-developed protocols in the future won’t require a painful swap out of your hardware.  To make this possible your network architecture should support you with elements such as:

 

  1. Programmable network platforms with high logical scale (e.g.: Juniper’s EX9200 switches and MX Series routers) that can handle the demands of terminating high volumes of connections and that run a common operating system that has been built to solve hard problems to enable you to deploy solutions broadly.
  2. Programmable ASICs (e.g.: Trio from Juniper) that can provide the level of performance and power efficiency needed along with extensible programmability to work seamlessly with topology-aware protocols like OpenFlow, PCE, and BGP.
  3. Systems should be flexible enough to support Network Function Virtualization and leverage the cloud wherever possible.
  4. Your network OS should support direct programmability as well as multiple SDN protocols and interfaces to provide the maximum flexibility including:  OpenFlow, VXLAN, NVGRE, PCE, OpenStack plug-ins.
  5. Systems should provide analytics that expose critical data and insight to tools that can use the data to tune the network. This is critical as you think about harnessing big data to focus the Enterprise business or to drive new Service Provider revenue opportunities.

The Network Should Not Force Your Hand on Other Important IT Decisions

Potentially the biggest mistake you could make with a promising new technology is to lock yourself in before you know what will be right for you in the longer term. As you’re making decisions now, you can optimize how your network will play with your current infrastructure, or you can optimize for what you think shows promise for the future.  Would you rather be able to choose a path that does both? For this to happen you need to maintain as much flexibility as possible. Here are some considerations.

 

  1. If you use VMWare, Juniper has a compelling solution, from a jointly developed application to manage physical and virtual resources in Junos Virtual Control, to committed support for virtual network protocols like VXLAN and gateway solutions to provide an on-ramp between physical and virtual networks. 
  2. If you’re in the OpenStack camp, you’ll want integration with your networking equipment so that you can automate critical infrastructure configuration tasks like assigning ports and VLANs, so Juniper has integrated with OpenStack to provide the functionality that you will need.
  3. If you’re a fan of some of the OpenFlow controllers such as NOX, or BigSwitch’s Floodlight, we have OpenFlow on our switches and routers and have validated interoperability with some of the leading OpenFlow controllers over the past year.
  4. If you want a complete solution for an overlay network, you won’t have to wait long for our Contrail controller, which will work hand-in-hand with our Junos Space Network Management suite, as well as our routing, switching, and security hardware.

We Are In It for the Long Run Together

At Juniper we make investments for the long run, just like you do. We want to ensure that your investment with Juniper will allow your network to serve your organization well into the future. We want to ensure that you can use the best protocols and that your network will support the emerging technologies that you choose, such as overlay networks and SDN. We want to ensure that your network will provide the performance and integration with emerging technologies that is necessary for a complete solution that will serve your business goals. The time to start considering how changes in technology will impact your network purchases is now. It can start by having a conversation with Juniper.  For more information contact your account manager or see this link.

 

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About the Author
  • Prior to Juniper acquisition, Ankur was the Founder and CEO of Contrail Systems Inc - a pioneer in standards based network virtualization and scale-out networking software. Ankur has over 15 years of experience in building world-class networking products and leading high performance teams. Prior to Contrail, Ankur served as Chief Technology Officer and VP of Engineering at Aruba Networks, where he played critical roles in the rapid expansion of team, products, and global businesses. Before Aruba, Ankur helped drive Juniper’s initial entry into and expansion of the Ethernet Switching market. Ankur received his MSEE from Stanford University & BSEE from the University of Southern California.
  • Bob Dix currently serves as the Vice President of Government Affairs & Critical Infrastructure Protection for Juniper Networks. During his career, he has served in senior leadership roles in industry and government, including serving as Staff Director for the House Government Reform Subcommittee on Technology, Information Policy, Intergovernmental Relations and the Census during the 108th Congress. He represents Juniper on the Industry Executive Point of Contact for the President's National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee ( NSTAC ), where he chaired the Cybersecurity Collaboration Task Force in 2009. He served as Chair of the Information Technology Sector Coordinating Council ( IT SCC ) from 2008 – 2010 and currently remains a member of the Executive Committee. Mr. Dix was elected in May, 2011 as Chair of the Partnership for Critical Infrastructure Security ( PCIS ). He also serves on the National Security Task Force for the U. S. Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of the AFCEA Cyber Security Committee and Chairs the Supply Chain Assurance Subcommittee for TechAmerica. Additionally, Dix has actively worked to insure and coordinate private sector participation and collaboration with the National Exercise Program, intended to test our nation’s preparedness and resiliency. He served as Chair of the National Private Sector Working Group for National Level Exercise 2011 and 2010. In 2007 and 2009, Dix was honored with a prestigious Federal 100 Award, and was recognized in March, 2010 as the recipient of the annual FCW Industry Eagle Award. Dix also served as a local government elected official in Northern Virginia for 12 years and in his spare time coaches AAU/Travel girls basketball.
  • Brad Brooks is Juniper Network's Chief Marketing Officer. He joined Juniper Networks in February of 2011 and in his current role he is responsible for positioning Juniper’s growth strategy, growing opportunities in new and existing markets, and increasing the global demand for Juniper’s solutions by creating and delivering remarkable customer experiences. Prior to this role, he held the position of Vice President of Business Strategy and Marketing for the Software Solutions Division where he was instrumental in the development of Juniper’s software defined networking (SDN) virtualization vision and strategy as well as the creation of the new and innovative Juniper Software Advantage licensing model. Before joining Juniper, Brooks was at Microsoft serving as Corporate Vice President for Windows Consumer Marketing and Product Management leading the $8 billion consumer business for the Windows client. In this role, he oversaw the launch of Windows 7, the most successful launch in Microsoft’s history. He moved into this role from his position as General Manager for the Windows Commercial Business Group where he was responsible for the group’s global enterprise business efforts, including the market introductions of Windows Vista and Windows software assurance and enterprise agreement marketing. Amid a declining enterprise market, Brooks developed multiple solutions sets for enterprise customers and grew the $900 million annual business to $3 billion in three years. He came to Microsoft in 2002 to work on the initial business development and marketing of Windows XP Media Center Edition. Brooks has also held several product management, product development, business development, marketing, sales and operations roles with Enron, Lucent Technologies, and AT&T. Brooks has a master's degree in international management from the American Graduate School of International Management (Thunderbird) and a bachelor's degree in business from the California State University.
  • Bruno Rijsman is VP of Architecture in the Security, Switching and Solutions Business Unit (S3BU). He has been with Juniper for most of the past 15 years working various areas including SDN, BGP, MPLS, broadband subscriber management, and Junos.
  • Calvin brings sixteen years of network and network security experience to his role of marketing solutions for data center switching and routing. His comprehensive understanding of network and industry issues is built through his previous front-line roles across technical, product, solution and marketing. A bay area lifer, he spends what's left of his spare time rooting for another Giants world series title. Follow him @chachi04
  • Chloe Jian Ma leads Cloud and SDN/NFV solution marketing at Juniper Networks, where she is responsible for driving awareness, thought leadership and adoption of Contrail Cloud Networking and Service Automation software.
  • Security strategist, architect, evangelist/prophet, former-CISO, brick layer, priest and short order cook…product manager, product marketeer, CTO, advisor, board member and SQUIRREL! My life? It’s like Blade Runner meets Beautiful Mind w/some Patrick Swayze Roadhouse violence mixed in
  • Harsh Singh is a Senior Product Marketing Manager at Juniper Networks focused on Data Center networks. Harsh has over 15 years of experience in the networking industry. Prior to joining Juniper Networks, he worked at Cisco for 10 years, where he held roles in Product Management and Engineering. He holds a Bachelors degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering, Masters degree in Computer Science, and an MBA in Marketing.
  • Jerry oversees all aspects of OpenLab which serves as a catalyst to spark the development of new innovative software applications or solutions that leverage the power of SDN/network programmability and intelligence. OpenLab is unique within Juniper and with its polished facility, globally accessible lab, and educational programs – such as the SDN “hackathons,” it serves as a tool for customer, partners, and academia. Prior to this position, Jerry led the development, management and marketing of the company’s strategic partnerships for video/unified communications, optical networking, and content/media delivery. In addition to handling the day-to-day oversight of the partnerships, he established new cross-partner go-to-market processes to drive and manage joint field opportunities. Before joining Juniper, Jerry led the Lucent Technologies application hosting/service provider marketing organization. He has over 25 years of experience in the data networking field with a focus on strategic alliance development, marketing, and technical field support. Jerry possesses a BS degree in Computer Science from St. John’s University in New York. He is active as a Juniper ambassador within the technology and academic community which includes advisory board positions with both NJIT and Rutgers in New Jersey.
  • Jonathan Davidson is Senior Vice President and General Manager for the Security, Switching and Solutions Business Unit (S3BU). In this role, he is responsible for leading innovation, growth and product development in data center, campus, branch, and cloud. Davidson oversees the development of market-leading security and networking solutions and his team manages both the EX Series and QFX family of switches as well as the SRX line of security devices. Davidson joined Juniper in 2010 as Vice President, Product Line Management for the Edge and Aggregation Business Unit where he was responsible for the product lifecycle management, strategy, implementation, solutions and go-to-market activity for a range of leading edge routing product families, such as the E, M and MX Series. Prior to joining Juniper, Davidson had a 15-year career in various leadership positions at Cisco. He served as Director of Product Management at Cisco Systems where he focused on service provider solutions and led the enterprise routing product management team and service provider Layer 4 through Layer 7 services team. During his time at Cisco, he co-authored the best-selling books Voice over IP Fundamentals and Deploying Voice over IP. He also served as Director, Service Provider Solution Engineering. Davidson has spoken at leading industry events such as Interop and has held certification as Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert #2560. He is active on social media, and frequently shares his observations about the industry on his twitter account @jonathandavidsn and blogs.
  • 20 years technology experience in sales, product management and marketing. 15 in security. Living the good guys versus bad guys fight every day.
  • Mike Marcellin is Senior Vice President of Strategy and Marketing. In this role, he leads business strategy and marketing for Juniper’s industry-leading portfolio of high-performance routing, switching and data center fabric products. Additionally, his team is responsible for go-to-market planning, sales and customer education and information experience, as well as global competitive analysis. Prior to joining Juniper in 2010, Marcellin served as Vice President of Global Managed Solutions for Verizon, where he oversaw product development and marketing of its managed IP networking, hosting, security and IT solutions for businesses around the world. He also served as Vice President of Global Product Marketing for Verizon Business, executive director of Verizon Business’ IP and Ethernet portfolio as well as leading the company’s eCRM marketing division. Marcellin began his career with MCI in 1994. Marcellin is Chairman of the CMO Board for Telecommunications Industry Association and a Board Member of US Ignite, an NSF-sponsored initiative. He was a Rodman Scholar at the University of Virginia, where he received a bachelor of science degree with distinction in systems engineering. He is based in Sunnyvale, California.
  • Paul Obsitnik is Vice President of Service Provider Marketing for Juniper Networks Platform Systems Division (PSD), responsible for the marketing of Juniper’s portfolio of high performance routing, switching, and data center fabric products to Service Providers globally. Paul's team is responsible for marketing strategy, product marketing, go-to-market planning, and competitive analysis worldwide for the Service Provider segment. Obsitnik has extensive experience in marketing, sales and business development positions with a proven track record in creating technology markets. He has served in senior marketing and sales management positions at several companies including BridgeWave Communications, ONI Systems, NorthPoint Communications and 3Com. Paul holds a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Electrical Engineering from the United States Naval Academy and a Master of Business Administration from the Harvard Graduate School of Business. Obsitnik is based in Sunnyvale, California.
  • Rami Rahim is Chief Executive Officer and a member of the board of directors at Juniper Networks. Rahim will continue to lead the Juniper Development and Innovation (JDI), responsible for driving strategy, development, and business growth for Juniper's entire portfolio including routing, switching, and security, as well as for the ongoing evolution of silicon technology and the Junos operating system. As a technologist, Rahim has deep roots in Juniper’s development organization where he has applied his engineering acumen to the design and development of Juniper’s service provider and enterprise products. Rahim began his Juniper career in early 1997, as employee #32, and worked as an engineer on Juniper’s first product, the M40 core router. Rahim’s roles of increasing responsibility have grown over the years, from Vice President of the Edge and Aggregation Business Unit (EABU), to Senior Vice President/General Manager of EABU, followed by Executive Vice President/General Manager of Platform Systems Division for routing and switching, to his most recent role as Executive Vice President and General Manager of JDI, overseeing Juniper’s entire product and technology portfolio. Rahim holds 17 US Patents in networking technologies and is a member of IEEE. As a networking industry spokesperson, Rahim’s insights have been featured in publications such as Enterprise Networking Planet and Network World. Rahim shares his industry observations via Twitter @ramirahim and his Juniper blogs. Rahim holds a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from the University of Toronto, a Master of Science degree in electrical engineering from Stanford University. He completed an intensive 6-week executive program at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.
  • Stephen Liu is Senior Director of Product Marketing for Juniper Networks. In this role, he leads product marketing for Juniper’s industry-leading service provider portfolio of high-performance routing and switching products. These products include Juniper PTX Series, T Series, MX Series, and ACX Series platforms along with software and security. Prior to joining Juniper in 2013, Stephen served as Director of Service Provider Marketing at Cisco Systems. In that role, he led product and solution marketing worldwide for the service provider routing, switching, optical, and software portfolio. Products included NCS, CRS, ASR, and ONS platforms. Stephen attended the University of California, San Diego, where he received a bachelor’s of science degree electrical engineering – communication systems. Hobbies include restoring old Volkswagens and coaching competitive youth soccer. He is based in Sunnyvale, California.
  • As Chief Customer Officer, Vince Molinaro is responsible for driving the strategic and operational elements of the Sales, Marketing, Partners, Services and Support functions at Juniper Networks. He leads a global organization of more than 3,500 professionals that includes direct and indirect sales, systems engineering, advanced technologies and field operations. Molinaro brings more than 25 years of professional experience in engineering, product management, marketing, sales and operations to his worldwide role. He joined Juniper in 2009 and led the strategy and go-to-market execution for the company’s global service provider business. He was named EVP, Worldwide Sales in 2013 before assuming his current role in February 2014. Prior to joining Juniper, Molinaro held senior leadership positions at a number of technology companies including Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies, Alcatel-Lucent and Internap Network Services. He has extensive domestic and international experience having lived and managed large organizations throughout Europe and the U.S. Molinaro holds a bachelor of science degree in biomedical engineering from Boston University and a master of science degree in electrical engineering from University of Bridgeport. He is based out of the Juniper Networks facility in New Jersey, home of OpenLab, The Junos and SDN Center for Innovation.
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